Archive for 'Turkish'

Akdeniz’s Gyro “Burrito” is Pretty Freakin’ Tasty (If You Don’t Forget the Sauce)


Back when I was on my quest for a real deal Greek gyro (not a Middle Eastern shawarma sandwich, or a chopped up gyro from a cart), a number of commenters mentioned Akdeniz.  Sure it’s Turkish, and not Greek, and the place is a sit down restaurant- but their gyro sandwich is under $10 (one of the few things on the menu that is) and came highly recommended.  Well I finally got around to trying the thing, which is only available during the day, and although it wasn’t what I initially was asking for, it is definitely a tasty sandwich.

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Friday is Sidewalk Samosa Day at Kanaat


Lunch’er Joe made this pretty sweet discovery last week, and was nice enough to send along a few photos. Apparently Kanaat, the all you can eat Turkish buffet formerly known as Al Baraka on 55th btw. Lex+3rd, sells $1 samosas on the sidewalk in front of their restaurant on Fridays during lunch. I don’t know about you, but there is something about samosas being sold on the street that makes them that much more Midtown Lunch’ish, don’t you think?

In addition to the samosas, they also sell “boxed lunches”- which is not just sold in a box, but also out of a box. Check that out after the jump.

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The $9.99 All You Can Eat Buffet Takes Two More Steps To Becoming Extinct in Midtown

Al Baraka, Midtown’s best only Turkish buffet, is now Kanaat Turkish Restaurant.  The chef, food and lunch buffet are exactly the same, but it is now $10.95 (up from $9.95 before).  The lamb shanks are still on the buffet, so it’s worth the extra buck, but the current trend of lunchtime price increases worries me that soon all buffets will need special exemptions to be included in the Midtown Lunch’ing price range.

Another popular buffet that has broken the $10 threshold, after the jump… Read more »

Dervish Turkish Restaurant

I have to say I don’t normally eat at or write about places like this (and I don’t plan on starting a trend).  Dervish is a sit down restaurant, it’s over $10 and the decor is what you would describe as “nice”.  It could qualify for a “business lunch” and it’s not even a buffet… which means it’s not really Midtown Lunch material.  But, right before Christmas my boss said he wanted to take me and a co-worker out to a nice lunch as our holiday gift- so I figured I might as well bring the camera along for the hell of it.

Dervish is a Turkish restaurant on 47th between 6th & 7th with lunch and dinner specials that make it an obvious choice for tourists looking for something to eat before going to the Theater.  The lunch special is $14.95, and for that price you get your choice of an appetizer and an entree… a pretty good deal if you’re looking for this type of sit down meal.

For our appetizers I think we selected pretty well.  The Turkish Salad was nice with chunks of tomato, cucumber and onion tossed in a vinaigrette.  The hummus is a pretty standard choice- and was perfect for dipping the bread they bring out before the meal. But the real star was the egg roll looking bureks… stuffed with spinach and cheese these were pretty awesome.  I’ve never had a burek before- so I’m not sure how it compares with a less touristy Turkish restaurant… but these tasted pretty sweet to me.

Pics of my entree, and the +/- after the jump…

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Al Baraka… the Turkish Buffet


I’m a big fan of the buffet.  Not any particular buffet… just buffets in general.  I like the style of eating.  I like the variety.  I like the extent to which I can embarrass myself by eating a ridiculous amount of food.  Chinese would have to be my favorite kind of buffet, because I find it very hard to order just one thing at a Chinese food restaurant.  I’m actually a huge fan of any kind of Asian food in buffet form.  Sushi is not ideal (because of the freshness), but I have found a couple that I enjoy (like the Korean/Sushi buffet Arang, in Koreatown).  Indian buffets are great.  All you can eat Naan is an added bonus… and the only time I will lower my “don’t eat the bread” buffet rule.

American buffets are ok, but they are definitely my least favorite.  The buffet that a pregnant Frances McDormand ate at in Fargo (with the meatballs) looked pretty sweet… but unfortunately fictional buffets don’t count… and even if it does exist- I doubt I’ll ever be in that small town in Minnesota.  I love the buffets in Vegas- but I usually end up eating the Asian food- so that doesn’t really count as an “American” buffet.  I haven’t been to Charles Southern Kitchen (a Soul Food Buffet in Harlem) but it’s pretty high on the list.  Fried chicken on a buffet is the greatest and worst thing of all time… but I did survive a KFC buffet off I-95 in Florida once, so I’m sure I’ll be ok.

So on Friday, I was walking in an area of Midtown I had never been before and stumbled upon something very exciting (to me, because I’m fat and love buffets).  The place was called Al-Baraka, and it was something I had never seen before in all my buffet eating… a Turkish Buffet.  It passed the price test ($9.95), and the look test (the best part about eating at a buffet is that you can go in and take a peek at what you’re paying for) so I decided to check it out.

What I ate, the food porn and the +/- all after the jump…

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